Aged Spirits  

Fahrenheit 173 - Aged Spirits

"If it's not good enough to drink slowly, then it's not worth drinking"

Talisker tastings

 13 Apr 2005  

Talisker is a firm favourite with a lot of malt drinkers, but I was never a fan of it. The 10 year old I found too wild and chaotic. The slightly older "Distiller's Edition" is a little rounder, but it has three intense flavours fighting for attention instead of two - Amoroso sherry has joined the pepper and the peat.

I re­cently visited a vertical Talisker tast­ing hosted by Charlie Smith, the new distillery manager. The outcome is that I still find the 10 year old too wild and chaotic. However, I also found a few ex­pres­sions of Talisker that really appeal to me. For example the re­cently released 18 year old, the new whisky of the month. It's a lot milder than the "10" but there's still a lot going on: Fruit, peat and pepper in a very nice bal­ance. All in all very drinkable! 87 p

In contrast, the 1982 vintage is much more power­ful. It's the logical older brother to the 10 year old. It has more peat and less pepper but it's more fo­cused - more fo­cused on the peat, you could say =) 88 p (preliminary score - will be tasted again as soon as the bottle arrives!)

The best Talisker is the sherry matured 1981 vintage. The pepper and the peat are still there, but at a lower volume, so to speak. Add to this a won­der­ful sherry character and you get an in­ter­est­ing, en­ter­tain­ing combination. Quite fascinating! 91 p

The finale of the tast­ing was new 25 year old. It's light and bal­anced but compared to the other Taliskers it's so mild that it's a bit of a disappointment. It may have been unfair to put it at the end of the tast­ing though... 86 p

—   o   —

More articles:

Three new Swedish single malt whiskies
A review of Swedish single malts Box "Pioneer", Hven "Merak" and Smögen "Primör".

Five single malts from Cadenhead's
A review of Ardmore 1997, Balblair 1990, Glen Moray 1992, Strathisla 1987 and Strathmill 1995.

World whisky
A review of single malts from the Czech Republic, England, Germany, India, Sweden and Taiwain.

Six Irish whiskeys
A review of Green Spot, Yellow Spot, Tullamore Dew 12, Redbreast 12, Powers John's Lane and Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy.

Index of all articles